Winning Lottery and Sweepstakes Tips: What To Do When You’re a “Winner”
Holding the winning ticket is very exciting, but that excitement can lead you to do things that can jeopardize your identity and a whole lot more. It pays to be extra-cautious.
- Don’t pay to collect sweepstakes winnings. Legitimate lotteries and sweepstakes don’t require you to pay insurance, taxes or shipping and handling charges to collect your prize.
- Don’t wire money through companies like Western Union, and don’t send a check or money order by overnight delivery—something scammers often push you to do.
- Lookalikes aren’t the real thing. Disreputable companies sometimes use a variation of a governmental or nationally recognized name to try to confuse you and instill confidence in their offers.
- Consider whether you played the lottery or entered a contest in the first place. If you don’t remember buying a ticket or submitting an entry, then it’s safe to assume the winnings are bogus.